Thursday, September 24, 2009

De-conversion story 2

A long time ago, I began a topic about de-conversion stories. I asked readers to send in their stories, and I would post them, of course keeping the writer anonymous. This is the first and only one I've ever received. It's strange, because for the number of hits this page gets, I'd think somebody would have sent me a story before now. Anyway, if you want to send me yours, please go ahead.

*Make sure to get to the end of this post for an excellent quote to finish it off.

A reader writes:

My story begins when I was thirteen. I was a Lutheran, as my mother had raised me in the church. My father is Catholic, but that hardly matters. Anyways, I was in confirmation class (Yes, I went to two years of class, and have been confirmed in the Lutheran religion.), when I started to see past all the fancy language the pastor was throwing at us. Luckily for me we had just gotten a new pastor who was more open about answering questions.

He once asked us to question our faith, as that is what the brain God had given us was for. And I agreed on that point. Why give us the power to question, and then ask us not to? So I asked him a few questions, and my faith suddenly failed.

1. There is a God? (Yes)
2. He is all-powerful, all knowing? (Yes)
3. He knows everything that was, is, and will be? (Yes)
4. He has given us free will as a people to make our own decisions and act as we want? (Yes)
5. But if He knows what is to be, and we do not, how then do we have free will? Surely He knows what we are going to do? (Silence)

It occurred to me that a 13 year old boy should not be able to stump a 40-something year old pastor who has devoted his life to the church. And that set the ball rolling.

Why would God create a tree that, to eat from it, would cause Adam and Eve to be cast from Eden? Why would the tree contain the knowledge of good and evil? Why would He allow the Devil in? Surely He would know if the Devil were in his garden. He is all knowing. Why would He not forgive Adam and Eve? Surely if anyone ever deserved forgiveness, it was the two people He created who had no knowledge of right and wrong?

After all this my questioning of religion became sort of a hobby of mine. Once I found science and physics proper, not that crap they teach you in school, I mean Stephen Hawking, Einstein, etc., the truth became clear. Here was a way with answers, evidence, research. Not just an old book written by man.

Science became my religion, and it is to that I now devote my life. Surely if anything were worth my devotion, it would be the endless knowledge the universe offers freely, without want of my money or prayers or sacrifice. God has never helped anybody in a way that can be proven or supported by evidence. But science was curing disease, helping the blind to see, the deaf to hear, and the injured to heal. I have yet to see the benefits of religion, but everyday I hear of its misfortune of war, ignorance and greed.

Religious fanatics are the poorest people in the world. Knowledge is true wealth. And it is amazing how many people wish to live in poverty for their beliefs.


tina FCD said...

I don't have a de-conversion story, I was raised without religion, but always assumed there was a creator because that's all I was ever exposed to. I didn't attend church or anything like that, but most of the kids and adults that I was around, believed in god.
After learning that my oldest son was an atheist, and after countless conversations with him, I realized that I found my place in this world. I too, was an atheist. It had a name for what I was feeling.
At first I was afraid what people would think of me being atheist but now, I couldn't care less who knows.

I love the end of that de-conversion story. It would be an excellent quote. :)

Admin said...

Tina, I agree about the ending quote. I was originally going to post it separately, but decided to leave it as is. But I've emphasised it now.